Our Espresso in Torino and Piemonte series continues with the last of our reviewed cafés in Alba: Vincafè. Owned and operated by Umberto Penna and Massimo Torchio, this modern, trendy spot in the middle of Alba’s shopping district has a decent amount of indoor seating for having a apertivo, dining on lunch, or having an espresso while watching Italian music videos on the flat screen TV.

However, it is better known for its copious outdoor seating space — which takes over much of the pedestrian-only, cobblestone streets of Via Vittorio Emanuele. It is a prime spot to catch the Alba “fashion show” as locals and Italian tourists alike walk by.

In front of Vincafè's main entrance Espresso bar setup inside Vincafè

Rated 2 chicchi and 2 tazzine in the 2008 Bar d’Italia del Gambero Rosso, their espresso is rather workmanlike. The one exception is their loyal and proud use of Asti’s Ponchione coffee. Otherwise, they use a three-group La Cimbali M32 Dosatron to pull shots with a mottled medium brown crema. It has a pungent flavor of pepper and mild spice. A pretty standard, and decent, cup for Piemonte at €0.90.

Read the review of Vincafè.

The Vincafè espresso